- Business (Review from last rehearsal, overview of what is happening today)
- Character bio’s
- Brief Chekov review
- Chekov’s Qualities of Movement
- Archetypal Gesture
- Psychological Gesture
- Business was really brief today; I just wanted to ask the cast what they had percolated on from last rehearsal.
- The character bio’s were phenomenal. Eric and Tom went really deep and came up with a lot of creative, usable material. One aspect I found really interesting about Simian’s bio is that, as a child, he was branded by his older brother on his back. I can’t wait to incorporate that trauma in to Simian’s physicality. Tom had a really excellent backstory about Havilland originally wanting to be an actor and funneling that theatricality into house showing. They both came up with full names for their characters that became really useful later on in rehearsal. I plan on asking both of them to donate their character bio’s to this website.
- I used a worksheet given to me by Professor Anjalee Deshpande-Hutchinson during my stint as AD for Radium Girls to review the basics of Chekov. I talked about the 4 brothers, qualities of movement, aspects of physicality, character spheres, tempo, archetypal gesture, and psychological gesture. Today we mainly worked on qualities of movement, archetypal gesture, and psychological gesture. I’m going to scan the worksheet for Tom and Eric to fill in and refer to.
- Meditation went really well today! I was much more confident in what I was doing and I think I was much more effective. We also started with a more rigorous stretching routine, and I think I’m going to expand on that next rehearsal. Its really important that they aren’t stiff and I want them to feel aligned while they’re performing.
- Qualities of movement had a great start. I had them discover what there own quality was, and then I had them focus on their characters. They learned a lot about how their character naturally moves, but also how they move when they are not at ease. Simian was a radiator, as was Eric. However, Eric’s radiation is very positive and motivating, while Simian’s is quite intrusive and seeks to inflict itself upon other people. Tom is a flyer, as is Havilland. Both of them have a very carefree light movements when comfortable, but Tom discovered that Havilland uses a type of resistant sculpting to disguise himself and deal with hardship.
- Tom and Eric took best to Archetypal gesture which made their preliminary psychological gestures very powerful. We found that each character has two archetypal gestures: one for Simian and Havilland and one for Charles and Michael (the given names Eric and Tom chose from Simian and Havilland). Simian is a penetrate, Charles is a gather, Havilland is a push, and Michael is throw.
- From those basic archetypal gestures I asked them to develop more intricate psychological gestures inspired by some of their lines. Eric ended up with a very beautiful penetrate to pull for Simian and pull to gather for Charles. They were stunningly disparate and I’m very excited to see Eric play with these two sides of Simian. Tom’s two psychological gestures were more connected which fits well for Havilland. Both of them have pushes inside of them but Havilland’s more fearful and animalistic with a smash at the end. Michael’s is much more finessed with a pointed throw at the end. I feel like that those gestures define Havilland’s simultaneous victimhood and strength.
- After all the physical work, I wanted Tom and Eric to engage with the text and start digging into the intention and meaning of the lines. They did a phenomenal job of discovering new things through meisner-like repetition, and I think they are really beginning to understand the duality of meaning to a lot of the text. I’m starting to see some really creative and organic rhythmic choices and a lot of great vocal variation.
Another fruitful rehearsal!
Eric and Tom, Psychological Gesture